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Health officials aim to vaccinate 5 million Bangkok residents in 2 months

Tanutam Thawan

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Photo via Facebook/กรุงเทพมหานคร โดยสำนักงานประชาสัมพันธ์

To combat the Covid-19 outbreak in Bangkok, infecting more than 20,000 people in the capital since April, health officials plan to vaccinate 5 million Bangkok residents within the next 2 months in an effort to reach herd immunity. So far, only 5% of Bangkok residents have been vaccinated against the coronavirus.

The Public Health Ministry has set a goal to administer 100,000 doses each day in Bangkok with areas of the Bang Sue Railway Central Station to be used as a vaccination hub. Only those 18 and older in Bangkok are eligible for a vaccine. Migrants and other residents who aren’t registered are included in the capital’s vaccination campaign, according to deputy director-general of the Disease Control Department.

The Sinovac and AstraZeneca vaccines will be used in Bangkok’s mass vaccination campaign, according to the chairperson of the government’s sub-committee on vaccination management, Sopon Mekthon. The government expects more vaccine deliveries this month including 2.5 million doses of the Sinovac vaccine and 1.7 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine. Both require 2 doses to be effective.

A mass vaccination campaign has already been rolled out in Bangkok’s Khlong Toey slum where hundreds of people have tested positive for the virus. Some who have been in close contact with an infected person cannot afford to take off work to self-isolate. The crowded conditions also raise the risk of infection in the poor community.

PM Prayut Chan-o-cha says those who have now registered for a Covid-19 vaccine is below the target set by the government. With the first phase of vaccinations open to those most at risk of infections, more than 1.6 million people who are over 60, or who have an underlying health condition that put them at risk of a severe Covid-19 infection, have signed up for a vaccine. Only 500,000 of those people are in Bangkok.

“I’d like to invite everyone to come for a vaccine. We need to vaccinate as many people as possible so that Thailand will be able to move forward… All types of (Covid-19) vaccines the government has imported are effective, certified by the Public Health Ministry, used widely around the world on tens of millions of people including many country leaders.”

The Thai government aims to vaccinate 50 million people across the country by the end of the year.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

 

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Local Thai journalist speaking fluent Thai and English. Tanutam studied in Khon Kaen before attending Bangkok’s Chulalongkhorn University.

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